The UN-REDD Programme Strategy 2011-2015
UN Collaborative Programme on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation in Developing Countries, 24 February 2011

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND: The UN-REDD Programme has formally launched its first five-year Programme Strategy 2011-2015, which aims to provide targeted support to countries that have moved into REDD+ implementation, as well as readiness support to new partner countries. The Strategy outlines the Programme’s overall vision and mission, namely to support countries’ efforts towards REDD and transform their forest sectors so as to contribute to human well-being, and meet climate change mitigation and adaptation aspirations. It also includes the 2011-2015 objective to promote the elaboration and implementation of national REDD+ strategies to achieve REDD+ readiness. The Strategy defines six key work areas for Programme support: measuring, reporting and verification (MRV) and monitoring; national REDD+ governance; engagement of indigenous peoples, local communities and relevant stakeholders; multiple benefits of forests and REDD+; transparent, equitable and accountable management of REDD+ payments; and REDD+ as a catalyst for transformations to a green economy.

The Strategy notes that REDD will only succeed with the meaningful engagement of stakeholders that rely directly on forests for their livelihoods and who are often legal and/or customary rights holders, such as indigenous peoples and other forest dependent communities. These stakeholders are often not engaged in public decision-making processes, yet they depend on forests for their social and economic livelihoods as well as cultural and spiritual well-being. As such, they may be more vulnerable than other stakeholders in the context of formulating and implementing REDD+ activities. At the same time, they have a special role to play in REDD+ given their traditional knowledge and relationship to the forest and their presence on the ground. The UN-REDD Programme is committed to: supporting the full and effective engagement of indigenous peoples and other forest dependent communities, civil society and other relevant stakeholders in national and international REDD+ fora and initiatives at all stages of the process; and assisting national and international REDD+ processes to establish transparent and accountable REDD+ guidelines and strategies that recognize and respect the rights of, and respond to the concerns of, these stakeholders. This must be carried out in accordance with the human rights based approach in a manner that fulfils the requirements set forth in the UN Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) and other UN conventions and declarations on rights and participation, and the safeguards articulated for specific application to REDD+, such as those under the UNFCCC negotiations. Furthermore, the Strategy draws attention to UN-REDD’s Operational Guidance on the Engagement of Indigenous Peoples and other Forest Dependent Communities, and notes that, in adherence with UNDRIP Article 19, the UN-REDD Programme is facilitating the development of guidelines to seek free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) of indigenous peoples and other forest dependent communities, and to provide an effective recourse mechanism for stakeholders participating in readiness and REDD+ initiatives. To be eligible for funding, activities at both the national and international level should support the participation of indigenous peoples, other forest dependent communities and civil society in national readiness and REDD+ processes in accordance with the UN-REDD Programme Operational Guidance and social standards; negotiated REDD+ safeguards arrangements; and a country’s commitment to strengthen the national application of existing rights, conventions and declarations. Download the Strategy [pdf] …